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Sensory diet and other things

(8 Posts)
rebl Tue 06-Sep-11 10:17:42

My ds saw a paediatric OT yesterday for the 1st time (he's seen a major adaptions OT previously). She had already looked through the sensory questionaires school and I had filled in. She watched him do quite a few games and stuff. Asked even more questions of me. She said that ds is sensory seeking. She is wanting him to have a sensory diet delivered at regular intervals at home and school. I pointed out that he doesn't have TA to do that and she said that she'll be sorting that then! We'll see about that won't we!

She is refering him to SALT to get his swallow looked into because she thinks that its not right but I'm not really sure that that means and how they're going to see if he's swallowing ok. Does anyone know what they do?

She's also referred him to physio. His stiffness that he's had since a baby (he's 5) isn't right apparently. He's not moving "naturally" whatever that means. She's putting him into the CDC's motion group which she says is a weekly thing that is a group that work on both fine and gross movement with both physio and OT present. How does that work with school?

She didn't really go into great depth about what the sensory diet would involve other than doing various activities with him. Does anyone have any experience of this? Do these activities take 5 mins or 30 mins or what? Will ds think its all a game or will it be something that turns into a battle all the time because he doesn't like it?

paranoid2 Tue 06-Sep-11 11:25:03

Hi – MY DT2 started a sensory diet a few months ago and his diet involves doing a few minutes of exercises about 5 or 6 times a day. I think the whole thing is about doing little and often . It was started by Patricia Wilbarger so if you google her you will find a lot of information on its backround. Our OT was actually trained by her in the US so she is big into it.

We also do exercises for core stability and retained reflexes. Our sensory diet exercises involve – trampoling. Ballwork, wobbleboard exercises, body brushing, rolling on therapy balls and on floor . My DT2 is 10 so its probably easier to get him to do it . On school days he gets up and gets on with it as he likes to get it all out of the way. At the weekend he has to be pushed as he is not in such a routine.
I have a list for him which he uses . At school he does a few exercises at break and lunch time, things like skipping and star jumps and then we do the equipment ones when he is at home. His core stability and bilateral integration has improved and I think he is a bit calmer and less distracted. We are also doing the listening program for his auditory processing issues as well as listening exercises and these have helped also. Its difficult to know whats helping what as everything is interconnected.

Marne Tue 06-Sep-11 12:30:47

Both my dd's are having OT, DD2 has a sensory diet, i do it before bed (involves using the gym ball, making her cary or pull things up the stairs also blowing games), she also has a vibrating thing that we use around her mouth before she eats (but i often forget about this). She has OT on her statement (15-20 minutes a day working on sensory diet and physio). Both my dd's have hypermobility and low muscle tone so both need/have physio daily. Dd1 attended a group at school called 'learn to move' which involved doing simple excersizes and tasks, this was before she was referred to OT (which took a long time).

LeninGrad Tue 06-Sep-11 13:12:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

auntevil Tue 06-Sep-11 13:58:42

Rebl - just getting a new sensory diet from OT soon - but have been told that it will contain much of the activities in previous posts.
As far as school goes, they should be able to fit 5 or so minutes of activity in throughout the day without a statement or TA in place. In our primary, the SENco organises it. My DS has his special group with the SENco - where they work on fine motor skills, and he co-ordinates others that have sensory diets throughout the day with 'gross' exercises.
As far as swallowing goes it very much depends on what part of the swallow they believe is affected. Specialised SALTS can observe the swallowing process as your DS is eating. They can use stethoscopes to listen to the sounds of food going down. This will give them an idea as to whether a videofluoroscopy is required. This is where they can view images of the food 'in transit'. Some of swallowing is voluntary, some involuntary. Until they know what is causing any difficulty - if there is any - then the right professional can get involved. Food pyschologists, SALT, OT, ENT, Gastroenterology - all can have their part to play.
Do you think your DS has a problem with swallowing? Does he have issues with foods/textures etc?

rebl Wed 07-Sep-11 12:24:05

Thank you everyone. Alot of what you've all mentioned is similar to all the stuff he seems to do naturally. He's a trampoline lover. He loves bear hugs and head stands. Obviously none of that can happen at school. The OT said that he's coping in school but by the time he comes home he's so desperate to get the sensory input that he then goes for hours with extremes and that having a sensory diet delivered reguarly through the day will help keep him more regulated.

auntevil Its never occured to me that ds has problems with swallowing tbh. The OT said it needs checking because he refuses to drink without a fight and the snack he had when we were there she said he was chewing with his front teeth not his back teeth. He eats everything, only thing he won't eat is avocado.

auntevil Wed 07-Sep-11 13:20:45

I sometimes think we forget how much the tongue does in not just talking, but eating. My DS3 doesn't move food to the back for swallowing. He does the chewing bit OK though.

nightcat Wed 07-Sep-11 15:30:30

glad you are looking at chewing etc auntevil, I only retrospectively realised that my ds was unable to chew for .. years shock and noone even noticed shock

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